Definition of courtier in English:



  • A person who attends a royal court as a companion or adviser to the king or queen.

    • ‘But the advisers, courtiers, and generals that surround the throne are at a loss to determine what it means, much less what to do about it.’
    • ‘James II's queen and courtiers took profits from the sale of those transported to the West Indies.’
    • ‘The four knights were immediately recognised as royal courtiers and ushered into the Archbishop's private chambers.’
    • ‘Why should a depiction of a distant queen and her courtiers have been thought suitable for the decoration on a snuff bottle?’
    • ‘She looks like a queen waiting for a courtier to arrive.’
    • ‘Payments were made instead to courtiers to influence the queen's choice.’
    • ‘Deeming it expedient to move away, he became steward in the household of Sir Thomas Arundel, one of the king's courtiers.’
    • ‘It consisted of dancing, speech, and song brought together in an allegorical ‘device’ in honour of the king or a prominent courtier.’
    • ‘To be a courtier, a royal familiaris, was to be a man who might be at any time singled out to levy a tax, to govern a shire, to lead a campaign, even to kill the archbishop of Canterbury.’
    • ‘This cuts out the public, to be sure, but resembles the courtiers in any royal government.’
    • ‘The courtier and the king stood nearby watching the princess.’
    • ‘This lifestyle demanded that everything should be portable: the belongings of king and courtiers had therefore to be easily dismantled, packed and carried.’
    • ‘Thomas Lord Darcy, a courtier and companion of Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, Archbishop of York, built the house to fit his status as friend of the most powerful man after the King.’
    • ‘Some of those allegedly cheated are said to be close friends of Prince Albert - and two royal courtiers were among Fogwell's employees.’
    • ‘Like the king's courtiers, the princesses had to leave a room walking backward in the king's presence.’
    • ‘They were also outsiders in royal courts where courtiers did everything possible to sideline and ostracise them.’
    • ‘She sat back, spine straight, relaxed like a queen receiving courtiers.’
    • ‘His sympathizers and opponents were other cognoscenti: learned monks, bishops, courtiers, and kings.’
    • ‘My life would be pomp and circumstance, and my friends would be courtiers and other royals.’
    • ‘Royal chairs were built to be so lightweight that they could easily be moved to the side for the more important choreography of courtiers and king.’
    attendant, retainer, companion, adviser, aide, henchman, follower
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Middle English: via Anglo-Norman French from Old French cortoyer ‘be present at court’, from cort (see court).